Sunday, July 4, 2010

Americas Rugby World Cup History - USA

The case for the Americas to host Rugby World Cup 2023 gains further strength from the USA Eagles who have twice defeated Japan at Rugby World Cup´s. Japan will host Rugby World Cup 2019. The USA have been to every Rugby World Cup except for 1995 when Argentina defeated the USA in two play-off´s matches to determine who would be Americas 2. Fiji also did not qualify for Rugby World Cup 1995 but Africa had two teams for the first time - hosts South Africa and debutants Côte d'Ivoire. Fiji and the USA were unlucky because Oceania, and the Americas, were only alloted two spots. This lead to the expansion of the Rugby World Cup in 1999 to have 20 teams, and rightly so.

The USA have always competed well against the elite teams at Rugby World Cups. In 1987 the USA defeated Japan 21-18, in 1991 the USA were drawn in a tough group with England, Italy and New Zealand and lost all their matches but performed well. At Rugby World Cup 1999, the USA were very unlucky to lose 27-25 to Romania and despite losing all three pool matches they were the only team to score a try against champions, Australia. The USA were much improved for Rugby World Cup 2003. They lost 19-18 to Fiji after missing a conversion on full time and defeated Japan 39-26.

The USA unleashed an unheard of player named Zee Ngwenya at Rugby World Cup 2007 in which he scored two great tries - one vs Samoa and one vs World Champions South Africa. The later won try of the year award. The USA were very unlucky to not defeat Samoa in 2007 and should have also defeated Tonga. Nevertheless, the performances against England and South Africa were very positive and showed that the USA Eagles are a quality rugby team.

The USA are in Pool C of Rugby World Cup 2011 alongside Australia, Ireland, Italy and Russia. Their match vs Russia is guaranteed to attract the attention of the global media. The two teams met in Denver during the 2010 Churchill Cup. In a highly entertaining match the USA were victorious. The USA will be aiming to at least win vs Russia in 2011.

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